The City Magazine Since 1975

How to Make Mayo

Most chefs, whether Hellman’s fans or Duke’s, would likely contest that homemade mayo is best. Deidre Schipani—writer, editor, Post & Courier food reviewer, and graduate of L’Academie de Cuisine—tells us why: “Mayo is considered a mother sauce. Once you know how to make it, you can make so many variations on it.” She contends that with a little finesse, you can whip up your own mayo in minutes. 
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1 large egg yolk

1 Tbs. cold water

1/2 tsp. Dijon-style mustard

1 Tbs. lemon juice

1/2 tsp. kosher salt

1 cup canola oil


Place a dampened towel on work surface and place stainless steel or glass bowl on top. Separate egg and place yolk in bowl. Add cold water and whisk one minute. Add mustard, lemon juice, and salt; whisk to combine. Slowly drizzle oil into mixture. This works well if you drizzle the oil from a squeeze bottle. Once emulsion forms, gradually increase the speed at which you add the oil. Adjust seasonings to your taste. Place in jar. Refrigerate for up to three days.

NOTE: To avoid breaking the mayo emulsion, don’t add liquid too quickly, don’t add too much oil at once, and make sure all ingredients are at room temperature.          


Additional Flavoring Options: 

For Asian dishes add 2 tsp. toasted sesame oil and 1 tsp. sesame seeds

Wasabi powder – 1 tsp. or more to taste; combine powder with water before adding to mayo

Chipotle – 1 tsp. or more to taste

Fresh herbs – ¼ cup fresh herbs, especially tarragon and dill

Kimchi – mince and finely chop 2-4 Tbs. of kimchi

Garlic – microplane fresh garlic to taste for a “quick cook’s” aioli

Roasted red peppers, diced – for a  “quick cook’s” rouille


Minced pickles

Chopped fresh tomatoes

Extra Virgin Olive Oil, walnut or hazelnut oil – 1 tablespoon for added flavor

Anchovy paste – to taste

Finely grated peel of orange or lime

Hot sauce

Soy sauce


Tomato paste